Working out regularly doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. While there’s nothing wrong with putting your headphones on, pumping the volume up and getting straight to work, having a workout buddy can bring many benefits that you may not get when you exercise solo.
Having a workout buddy means that your training sessions can be more enjoyable, challenging and also consistent. It means having someone to rely on as well as someone relying on you, to push each other to get the best results possible.
1. It’ll be more fun
Exercising releases endorphins, meaning that you’ll be in a better, more positive mood. Hanging out with friends is also a guaranteed fun time, so by combining the two, you enhance the benefits of both.
Whether it’s using your exercise time as a social catch up (in between sets, of course), having a laugh and just enjoying each other’s company, it’ll make gym sessions fun.
Not to mention, having someone there with you will help you get out of your comfort zone. With an encouraging partner, you’ll be more inclined to try new things whether it’s a group class, new exercise or even if it’s just venturing to the weights section.
Setting up a time to work out with your friend together means you’re more likely to go. After all, skipping a scheduled gym workout won’t just mean letting yourself down but your friend as well. It also means your workout buddy won’t be cancelling to not let you down either.
By keeping each other accountable, you’ll both be able to form a consistent routine and by forming a consistent routine, you’ll see results much faster. It’s a win-win situation.
3. Pushed harder
There’s a reason why people hire coaches or trainers, it’s because they want someone to give them the push they need in a workout. And if you have a workout buddy, you’ll be able to reap this benefit as well.
Your workout buddy will be able to be your motivator; the one who tells you to pick up the bar or dumbbell when you don’t want to or to keep running when you want to stop. Not to mention, if you’re thinking that you’re not going to hit that last rep on the bench press, they’re the ones that are going to be pushing you to keep going and to not give up.
This also works just as well if there’s a little friendly competition happening between the two of you. Seeing them hit new PRs or smashing out those burpees and not stopping can drive you to keep pushing even though you don’t want to. Having someone there means that you’ll be challenged, whether it’s from motivation or competition.
4. Reduce injuries
One of the reasons why working out with your friend means that you can be pushed harder, is because it’s also safer. Your workout buddy can serve as your spot when you’re trying to hit new PR’s and be the reason why you feel like it’ll be okay to try hitting it in the first place.
Your workout buddy will also be able to help check your form and let you know when it needs to be fixed. For example, if your back was too rounded in the last set of deadlifts or your running form is a bit off. It’ll reduce the risk of injuries as well as ensure a safe training session. After all, if you trust your partner to spot you for trying to hit a new bench PR, you’ll know you’re in safe hands.
Finding the right workout buddy
Of course, it all comes down to finding the right workout buddy for you as well. To get the full value of having a workout partner, as well as to make the process as smooth sailing as possible, make sure you find someone who meets these three criteria:
1. Same routine
There’s no use having a workout buddy who likes to train at night when you’re a morning gym-goer. It means that you won’t be able to align your schedules together to even make it to training in the first place. Find someone who has the same schedule as you.
2. Same goals
If your goal is to enter a powerlifting competition, then find someone else who is a powerlifter. This way, your workouts will be similar and you’ll be in the same mindset. If your goal is to bulk up, then finding someone else who is also bulking can help ensure that you’re both on the same page and can work together to achieve that.
3. Same commitment
Make sure that your friend is committed to the work, just as much as you are. If they don’t care as much as you do or vice versa, then you won’t have the same mindset going into this and this imbalance will eventually show.
A workout buddy can bring so many benefits to your training. It means you’ll be more consistent, will be pushed harder as well as be able to meet your goals faster. Not to mention, it can make exercising itself much more enjoyable.